|Oxford (UK): Opening and eviction of a new social centre...|
December 5th, 2010
As of today the Fox and Hound pub on the corner of Abingdon and Wiers road, derelict since July 2009, has reopened for the use of the local community as a space for free cultural expression and the growth of solidarity in a climate of austerity.
We are happy to announce the birth of a new social centre in Oxford! As of today the Fox and Hound pub on the corner of Abingdon and Wiers road, derelict since July 2009, has reopened for the use of the local community as a space for free cultural expression and the growth of solidarity in a climate of austerity.
Even more good news: our potential hub of communal re-creation stands in the way of a second attempt by grocery market monopoliser Tesco to buy up the land, demolish the site and build yet another supermarket in its aggressive tactic of out-competing local shops and businesses. Hurray!
We think it´s scandalous to have buildings stand empty in a city with a chronic lack of affordable housing and free spaces for social events and gatherings and so we decided to respond to Tesco´s latest bid at community take-over with direct action: by re-appropriating this abandoned building for the public good.
A variety of activities have already been proposed: as a space for free community meals (courtesy of Oxford Food Not Bombs) a café, music and events venue, as a community garden and as a space for skill sharing and workshops. Following the successful liberation and subsequent eviction of the Radcliff Camera library the Oxford Occupation-In-Exile are also keen to move the free university into a new space for critical and non-hierarchical education and skills sharing. Any other creative and inspired collectives are welcome to add their energy to the project!
We hope that the space can become a focal point for a wider discussion about our community and how it will fare in the coming year, bearing in mind the huge cuts to social welfare planned by the Con-Dem government. By offering a free space to hold meetings and community events, we believe the newly-revived Fox and Hound can play an effective role in local organising against these unprecedented attacks on our society.
From the rising student movement, to trade unionists and pensioners, the wider public are mobilising and we need spaces to consolidate our efforts and create a common platform of resistance. This is a community effort! Please come and join us with your ideas, your energy and your creative skills.
Pop by, say hello and share some tea any time. Anyone who feels motivated would be welcome to help us rejuvenate this beautiful building and take part in making this an open project guided by and able to answer the genuine needs of the local community: first general assembly tomorrow (December 6th) to discuss the use of the space and upcoming events.
This is a call out to all activists, community builders and local residents – come, add your voice to the project and help determine its future – infinite possibilities exist wherever we work together with solidarity and imagination!
Hope to see you there very soon.
Get in touch at:
foxopenspace at lists dot riseup dot net
P.S. We would particularly appreciate any kind donations of beds, blankets and any other unused furniture for the immediate future!
- New Oxford social centre evicted!
December 6th, 2010
Within hours of the call out to inaugerate the opening of a new social centre in Oxford heavy handed police response puts a spanner in the works...
After a fun communal day of cleaning and preparation the inaugeration of Oxford´s new social centre was rudely interrupted by the appearance of more than 8 police cars, vans, an attack dog and plenty of police armed with battering rams for a hasty eviction.
A very clear indication of Oxford police force´s attitude to legal squatting rights and the effort to rebuild free spaces for community projects and social solidarity in times of crisis...
(Mabye Tesco had something to do with too.)
Not to worry - plenty of leafletting and positive conversations with neighbours highlighted the local support out there for a new social centre - watch this space!
Please stay in touch and send any messages of support or suggestions to foxopenspace at lists dot riseup dot net.
We´d love to hear from you!
foxopenspace at lists dot riseup dot net
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